Travelling alone in Amsterdam, whilst liberating can be a little daunting to first-time solo travellers. But don’t let that deter you! From museums and cheap eats to Europe’s biggest flea market and even a mini-spa(!) – take a look at our top things to do alone in Amsterdam.
In a rush? Here’s a snapshot of our list…
1. Enjoy a walking tour around Amsterdam
The winding streets, whilst beautiful, can be hard to navigate for those on their first solo trip to Amsterdam. To help you get your bearings, we recommend that you attend one of Amsterdam’s free walking tours.
Walking tours are a great way to meet new people, whilst learning about Amsterdam’s tales, history and hidden secrets. Typically, Amsterdam’s walking tours visit Anne Frank’s house, The Jewish Quarter, Dutch East India Company headquarters, canals, locks, and hidden churches.
Whilst these walking tours are free, attendees are encouraged to pay a small fee to tour guides. If you’re staying at ClinkNOORD youth hostel in Amsterdam, we recommend meeting at the reception at 10.25 AM for a free walking tour right from our hostel. Simply look for the red umbrella!
If walking isn’t your thing, opt for a bike ride in Amsterdam. The city is famous for being cyclists friendly, you wouldn’t be able to find a better way to explore the city like locals do!
2. Take a stroll around Vondelpark
We know that it can be easy to feel overwhelmed in a city whilst travelling alone, paired with the eagerness to cram everything in over a short period of time. We recommend that you allow an hour or two to take a stroll around Vondelpark to slow it down, gather your thoughts and take a moment to admire the park’s lakes, ponds and weeping willows. Along the 3.3km circuit are 2 cafes, Groot Melkhuis and De Voneltuin, serving hot and cold drinks, snacks and meals to enjoy during your stroll.- During summer, we recommend enjoying a picnic outdoor!
3. Visit the museums in Amsterdam
If visiting one of Amsterdam’s array of museums isn’t on your list of things to do alone in Amsterdam, then we’re here to convince you otherwise! From art museums to the Anne Frank House, there are plenty of places in Amsterdam to get lost in. Check also our guide to the best museums in Amsterdam, to visit alone or with your friends.
Anne Frank House
Visiting Anne Frank’s former home is one of the most moving experiences in Amsterdam, and going it alone is one of the best ways to really connect with the atmosphere in the museum. The audio tour, which vividly explains each room in detail, allows visitors to learn how Anne Frank and her family spent their final years in Amsterdam. If you have just one museum in mind on your list of things to do alone in Amsterdam, then let it be this one.
Anne Frank House,
1016 GV Amsterdam,
Admissions: from €10.50
Museum Ons’ Lieve Heer op Solder
A.K.A church in the attic. Hidden in the heart of Amsterdam’s city centre lies a rare, well-preserved canal house with a secret: a complete catholic church in the attic. The church was built by Catholic merchant Jon Hartman, who lived there with his family during the period that Catholic celebrations were strictly prohibited.
Ons’ Lieve Heer op Solder,
Oudezijds Voorburgwal 38-40,
1012 EH Amsterdam,
Book tickets here
Van Gogh Museum
The Van Gogh museum, whilst largely popular, is a quiet place for visitors to marvel at the artist’s life works, and discover the often troubled years he suffered due to illness. For a more relaxed experience, visit the museum in the morning as it’s usually less crowded.
Van Gogh Museum,
1071 DJ Amsterdam,
Book tickets here
4. Visit Europe’s biggest flea market
Crowned Europe’s biggest flea market, IJ-Hallen is a hidden gem for travellers alike and one of the coolest activities to do alone – because what’s better than a little retail therapy when travelling solo in Amsterdam? With two grand halls jam-packed with vintage clothes, shoes, antiques (and anything else you can think of), IJ-Hallen is the perfect place to source a souvenir of your solo travel trip to Amsterdam, or a gift to bring back to a loved one. However, the market only runs twice per month, so check whether it coincides with your travel dates on their website.
1033 WC Amsterdam-Noord
Admissions: from €5
Book your tickets here
5. Catch a movie at Tuschinski
Considered to be one of the most beautiful cinemas in the world, Tuschinski was commissioned by Abraham Icek Tuschinski in 1921 to give Amsterdammers a place to watch the latest performances in serious style. Today, the main auditorium hosts many premieres of Dutch films and shows the best films available in cinemas. But if you don’t get a chance to catch a film, we recommend you take a look around the feature to marvel at the incredible architecture.
1017 CN Amsterdam,
Admissions: from €13 (depending on the movie)
Book your tickets here
6. Visit Brouwerij ‘t IJ
If the Heineken tour isn’t quite your thing, we recommend that you add Brouwerij ‘t IJ to your list of things to do alone in Amsterdam instead. This small Amsterdam brewery is housed in the former Funen bathhouse, just next to the De Gooyer windmill, and offers brewery tours to a maximum of 20 people in both Dutch and English every Friday, Saturday and Sunday. These smaller tours are perfect for solo travellers in Amsterdam to meet other tourists in a more intimate setting. Plus, it’s much cheaper than more commercialised brewery tours at just €6.50 per person, including 1 beer each. It’s a win-win! We recommend you arrive at Brouwerij ‘t IJ’s bar early on the day, as spaces can be filled fast.
Brouwerij ‘t IJ
Funenkade 7, 1018 AL Amsterdam,
7. Visit one of Holland’s iconic tulip fields
Take a day trip out of the city centre to experience the incredible beauty of one of Holland’s iconic tulip fields – we promise that you will not regret it. The tulip is one of the most enduring symbols of the Netherlands. If you’re visiting in Spring, check out the botanical gardens of Keukenhof, which open every year around March, or read our guide to the Amsterdam flower festival, to learn more about this event. If you’re visiting in the winter, don’t despair: there are special tours that take you behind the scenes of a tulip greenhouse where flowers are grown all year round! Holland’s tulip fields are an Instagrammer hotspot, so don’t be afraid to ask other tourists to take your photo – we’re sure that many would be happy to do so if you return the favour.
2161 AM Lisse,
8. Practice Yoga
Practising yoga is fun but also a healthy activity for your body and for your mind that you can do on your own, at any time. If you’re on a tight budget, we’ve got your back. Why not take part in one of our yoga classes?. It is completely free, located in the Atrium every Thursday at 9 am. Check out our ClinkNOORD youth hostel in Amsterdam to find more info about the events organised. Namaste.
9. Learn how to make Dutch Pancakes
If you’re looking for more fun activities to do alone, learn the traditional Dutch recipes at a private pancake-making class in the home of an Amsterdam local person. Experience the city like a local, visiting an organic grocery store with your host to pick up ingredients, and then get hands-on practice mixing, cooking, and flipping the Dutch delicacy, before sitting down together to enjoy your included pancake lunch.
10. Where to eat alone in Amsterdam
Eating alone whilst on a solo trip to Amsterdam can be daunting, we get it. But once you have taken the plunge, we guarantee you’ll wish you’d have done it before. See, eating alone is liberating, and empowering and allows you to be you. Here are just a handful of places we’d recommend you grab a bite to eat on your solo trip to Amsterdam. If you are looking for new tasty and “instagrammable” places, also have a look at our guide to the best restaurants in Amsterdam and the best rooftop bars.
Because cats make everything better. Period. Kettencafe Kopjes, Amsterdam’s first and finest cat cafe offers a warm place to kick back, relax and enjoy lunch in the company of some of the cutest cats ever.
Marco Polostraat 211,
1057 WK Amsterdam, Netherlands
De Food Hallen
Foodhallen is home to a wide range of high-quality concepts and is a household name for food lovers. Discover different types of cuisines from all over the World at an affordable price. At Foodhallen you can have a hotdog with speciality beer, cheese platters with white wines, the best meat with red wines or just drink a gin tonic.
Kinkerbuurt, Oud-West, West
11. Where to enjoy a drink in Amsterdam as a solo traveller
Amsterdam has its fair share of excellent watering holes. But knowing which to choose when travelling alone in Amsterdam can be a little tricky. So, whether you like the hustle and bustle of busy bars, or prefer to enjoy a tipple in a quiet corner with a book, here are a handful of bars we’d recommend you take a visit during your solo trip to Amsterdam. If you plan on experiencing the capital like the Dutch do, we suggest you grab a beer at one of the best brown cafés in Amsterdam.
If you’re looking to experience one of Amsterdam’s traditional, friendly ‘brown cafes’ then head to Cafe Hoppe. The space dates all the way back to 1670 when it was originally a jenever distillery and, since then, has been a gathering place for the city’s intellectuals – similar to the eighteenth-century coffee shops of London. Whilst there are many quiet corners for you to enjoy a drink in your own company, brown bars are filled with many chatty locals and tourists alike, so be sure to mingle with others at the bar.
1012 XA Amsterdam,
Book your table here
Amsterdam Roest is arguably one of Amsterdam’s best bars. With a relaxed, industrial vibe, you can enjoy drinks outside in the summer on their ‘beach’, and dance the night away with one of their many warehouse parties and festivals. With an array of markets, parties and events, Amsterdam Roest is the perfect place to visit alone and leave with new friends.
Jacob Bontiusplaats 1,
1018 LL Amsterdam
If you’re really looking to treat yo’self, A’DAM Tower’s Madam bar and restaurant is the one for you. The bar offers breathtaking panoramic views across the city to enjoy whilst sipping on a cocktail (or two). But hold the cash, Madam only takes payment via card.
1031 KS Amsterdam,
12. Relax and recuperate at Sauna Deco
Escape from the hustle and bustle of the big city near the end of your solo trip to Amsterdam and enjoy a few moments to yourself at Sauna Deco, located in the heart of the city. Take a refreshing dip in the cold water plunge pool and feel your stresses melt away in the steam bath. Just an hour or two at Sauna Deco will make you feel relaxed, refreshed and ready to take on your journey home.
1015 BE Amsterdam
Admissions: €25 (student rate: €20)
Book your place here
On a final note
Whether you try each and every item on our list of things to do alone in Amsterdam or handpick just a few, Amsterdam is the perfect place for solo travellers to soak up a city packed with history, and an array of things to do and incredible people. If you’re visiting the city for the first time, don’t miss out on these interesting Amsterdam facts.
If you’re visiting Amsterdam for a city break, check out our ClinkNOORD youth hostel in Amsterdam for a friendly affordable place to stay. We also offer cheap group accommodation in Amsterdam if you’re planning a group gateway or a stag do.